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Design, Synthesis, Molecular Docking, Dynamics and <i>in vitro</i> Evaluation of Novel 2-substituted-1-hydroxyethane-1, 1-bis(phosphonic acid) Derivatives as Human Farnesyl Pyrophosphate Synthase Inhibitors with Expected Anticancer Activity

[ Vol. 29 , Issue. 1 ]


Mohammed A. Khedr*, Reem I. Al-Wabli, Maha S. Almutairi and Wafaa A. Zaghary   Pages 48 - 59 ( 12 )


Background: Nitrogenous bisphosphonates (NBPs) are the major class of drugs that are used to treat osteoporosis. Recently, bisphosphonates (BPs) were reported to have an anticancer effect. These agents feature a high affinity that enables them to bind strongly to the human farnesyl pyrophosphate synthase enzyme. The correlation between this affinity and their anticancer effect was confirmed.

Objective: To date, the use of an oxygen atom as an isosteric replacement for the electronegative nitrogen atom in NBPs has not been reported, and its ability to retain the linker length and bisphosphonate pharmacophore remains unknown. The main aim of this work was to design some isosteric bisphosphonate analogs with oxygen atoms and evaluation of their binding affinity and anticancer activity.

Methods: The binding mode and stability of the designed compounds were achieved using human farnesyl pyrophosphate synthase (HFPPS) by docking and dynamic simulations. The compounds were synthesized, characterized, and screened for their anticancer activity against the breast cancer MCF-7 cell line and lung cancer A-549 cell line. The inhibitory activity of the tested compounds against HFPPS was evaluated.

Results: The compounds under investigation showed potential anticancer activity against the lung cell line with IC50 values of 41.7, 47.4, and 34.8 μg/ml in comparison to that of Risedronic acid (115 μg/ml). However, they do not exhibit potential activity against the breast cancer cell line.

Conclusion: Compounds VII and VIII showed in vitro inhibition of human farnesyl pyrophosphate synthase with IC50 values of 82.2 and 98.8 μg/ml, respectively. Further optimization may be required in the future.


Bisphosphonates, molecular docking, molecular dynamics, HFPPS, breast cancer, lung cancer.


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